What Happens After A Will Is Created?
A will must be probated before it becomes effective. Probate is the court receiving the document notifying everyone who has the legal right to contest the document, once no one has contested it or once those who have contested it have been resolved, than the judge will say “ok, this is the will and will then empower the executor to do what the will says. That is the probate process. A very cynical attorney out in Texas refers to probate as a lawsuit you file against yourself in favor or your predators. That is a very cynical view, I am cynical, not quite that cynical. It is a court process and can only be done on sufficient proof that the will is actually the will. It is a court determined process, so probate is in the jurisdiction of the court. Anything that involves the court is slow, very slow. Georgia probate on a good day, when everything is functioning on all cylinders and all the dates are hit properly, nine months at least. Usually years, sometimes a year and a half, throw into that any complication, you just add to that time frame. Guess when the money is distributed to the beneficiaries, guess when that occurs? At the end, that is the second to the last thing that happens. The money gets distributed and than the executor goes back to court and says “Your Honor, I’m done, relieve me of my duties. I know people think it’s an honor to be an executor and kids will be offended that mom and dad didn’t name them as executor, and I will say “ Be Happy.” It’s a job, you have responsibilities. You have to deal with the court. Who you select as your executor is just as important as who you select as your trustee. I like to include, I like to get down to the generational level of the kids. Often times younger parents will name their parents as the executor but statistically, you’re going to outlive your parents we need to have people listed behind them, you do like to have a succession of executors I usually like to go down to the children, but if the children are like elementary school age you may not be able to do that. So get it at least on your generational level. Brothers, sisters, cousins, nieces, nephews, responsible people, responsible people, responsible people. Those are the first three requirements for an executor is responsible people, I think it’s also five, six and seven, honest is also helpful. A will does not provide for your incapacity. If you become incapacitated, you don’t pass away, you are just incapacitated, your will does nothing. That is an important distinction between a will and a trust.
Nadler Biernath LLC assists clients in the Atlanta, Georgia area and throughout Georgia including Kennesaw, Alpharetta, Roswell, Marietta, Buckhead, Johns Creek, Duluth, East Cobb and Dunwoody.